Gregg Latchams advises on launch of new Top Level Domain
Bristol and London law firm Gregg Latchams has advised UK Creative Ideas Limited (UKCI) on the global launch of the new .ART top-level domain. Sitting alongside the likes of .com, .org and .net, .ART provides an exclusive domain on the internet for individuals and organisations associated with the art world in all its guises.
UKCI was founded by venture capital investor Ulvi Kasimov, who is passionate about the intersection of art, finance and technology. His vision is for .ART to become much more than an address and a marketing tool; but to become the essential technical infrastructure for the art market to thrive in the digital age.
UKCI instructed Gregg Latchams in October 2015, having secured the worldwide right to operate .ART in a private auction against nine other applicants. Since being instructed, the team at Gregg Latchams has advised UKCI on:
- Contracting arrangements with ICANN, Registry Service Providers, Escrow Providers, Registrars and Resellers
- Registrant terms and conditions and policies
- Protecting its intellectual property assets around the world
- Corporate group structure and corporate governance
- Reputation management
- Data privacy matters
- Employment matters
Given the international scope of UKCI’s business, the team has coordinated with lawyers and other professionals from multiple jurisdictions including Europe, Isle of Man, Jamaica, China, Russia and the USA.
.ART launched with a preferred access period in early 2017, before opening up to the general public on 10 May. The preferred access period yielded over 300 early adopters including famous artists and foundations, prestigious galleries, luxury brands and celebrities such as: Banksy; Shen Wei; Fondation Cartier; Centre Pompidou; Guggenheim; Tate; Rolex; Audi; Apple; and Beyoncé. Within 24 hours of opening up to the public, over 3,000 domain names were purchased and on 27 June 2017, .ART celebrated 10,000 registrants:
Paul Hardman, who led the multidisciplinary team which worked on the launch, commented:
“This has been a truly exciting project to be involved with. There are not many firms that get the opportunity to help launch a new top-level domain, with all of the technical issues that this involves.
The potential for .ART as an identifier for individuals, institutions and even art and cultural objects is huge and this has generated some very interesting legal considerations which we have had to navigate. We have also demonstrated our ability to advise on global projects, drawing in professional support from other jurisdictions where necessary.
As keen supporters of innovation in the art and technology sectors, we are delighted to have been selected as UKCI’s legal partner and look forward to our continued involvement with the project, in particular, collaborating with UKCI on legal solutions for its customers.”
The Digital Media & Technology team at Gregg Latchams has considerable experience and expertise in the domain name industry and is able to advise clients on:
- Launching new TLDs
- Disputes with technical partners
- Domain name disputes
- Registrar sales and acquisitions